“Steve” and “Jason” lived in the same rooming house. Steve for almost eight years; Jason for just a little over a year.
One day as Steve was out heading for a job interview, he received a call that his home was on fire. He quickly cancelled his interview and rushed back to his place to find it in flames. It was soon apparent that he would lose everything, but he prayed and hoped that at least his cat could be saved. Miraculously, Steve was reunited with his companion, but he was out of a home with no belongings and now in search of new shelter.
Jason had been living on the streets and couch surfing for years. He had just lost his job and was in the process of applying for employment insurance when he heard about the fire at his rooming house. He too lost everything, including his gecko that had kept him company through some hard times
Both Steve and Jason regularly frequented CRC and so they turned to CRC staff for support to figure out where they were going to live.
CRC worked to ensure they did not have to go back into a rooming house and advocated to get them into self-contained units. CRC wanted to find them a place where they didn’t have to share bathroom or kitchen space, to ease some of the anxiety from losing so much.
Within a week Steve was in a bachelor apartment not far from where he originally lived. It took almost a month for Jason to find housing because he needed to be in a community where he felt safe because of his sexual orientation. Jason eventually found a one-bedroom apartment.
In fact, they ended up living in the same building, which made it easier to integrate themselves into a new community.
Since Steve and Jason had lost everything, CRC also worked with volunteers to help them to obtain furniture, small household items, and much needed essentials to rebuild their homes.
Steve and Jason still come to CRC regularly to check in and are very grateful for the support they received. Both are now working and really like their new home.
By Michelle Brown, Housing Support Worker